Maneka aid for rescued camel

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  • Published 22.11.10

Silchar, Nov. 21: Animal lovers of Katlicherra in Hailakandi district have recently rescued a camel meant for sacrifice on the occasion of Id-ul-Zuha.

The district administration and forest offices in Hailakandi were initially in a soup as senior officials could not find a suitable place to rehabilitate the camel which was brought to the south Assam district from Rajasthan.

As camels do not fall under the Indian Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, forest officials cannot shift it to the nearest zoo in Guwahati. They can neither release it to any nearby wildlife sanctuary or reserve forest.

The forest officials in Hailakandi district, for the past few days, had to feed it only dry grass and leaves of berry trees instead of thorny shrubs, the animal’s staple food, according to district forest officer Dilip Das.

Police intelligence today said the camel was brought to Katlicherra, about 15km from district headquarters town of Hailakandi district, by Anawar Hossain Laskar, an employee of the irrigation department and contractor.

Police sources said the animal was found moving about under the gaze of curious onlookers at a bus stand in Katlicherra town, which falls under the constituency of the Assam excise and border minister Gautam Roy, a day before Id. Some people informed the People for Animals (PFA), Assam chapter.

Roy’s office handed it over it to the district forest office in Hailakandi town, the district headquarters, about 15km from Katlicherra.

Last night, the new deputy commissioner of Hailakandi district, Bhuban Chandra Bora, first contacted Sangeeta Goswami, an associate of BJP MP Maneka Gandhi and chief of the Assam chapter of People For Animals.

The members urged him to get in touch with Maneka Gandhi and gave him her mobile number.

Bora, according to official sources in Hailakandi, rang up Maneka, who lost no time in arranging the camel’s stay at an animal care camp run by her NGO in New Delhi.

The camel will be taken there in a truck.

On Tuesday, the PFA, Assam chapter, faced public wrath after the NGO activists refused to release three camels meant for sacrifices on the occasion of Id-ul-Zuha. The animals had to be released following a court order.